Sciatica is a term that defines severe back ailments and certain associated signs of dysfunction. This condition may hinder mobility, as well as your ability to work, hence putting a damper to daily productivity.
Someone with this condition usually experiences shooting pain originating from the lower back of the spine to the buttocks and back of the leg. Pain relievers cannot effectively cure this condition though they can offer relief.
Because of their expertise in treating and alleviating pain in the human body, a chiropractor may be the right fit for help with this condition.
The information below will give you a broader knowledge of Sciatica and describe the type of remedies a chiropractor might use in treating this ailment.
What Is Sciatica?
Sciatica is a pain that affects your back, hip, and outer part of your leg. It stems from compression of the nerve root, which then extends as a form of irritation.
This is also caused by herniated disks and bone spurs due to excessive stress around the spine region. Naturally, Sciatica only affects one part of the body, leading to an imbalance in the body structure.
Signs and Symptoms
Sciatica comes with the following characteristics. When one or more of these symptoms are present, you may have Sciatica.
- Pain: This occurs as a sort of burning irritation at your lower back which almost extends to the front of your thigh. The pain may be severe enough that you can hardly lift your leg.
- Constant numbness: Many things can cause numbness of your legs. It could prompt from sitting cross-legged. In such a case, you don’t feel your legs at all. That could be a normal thing, but when it’s constant without a known cause, then it becomes a case of Sciatica.
- Weakness: It can sometimes leads to the general weakness in the extremities if it has progressed. Reflexes may also be affected.
- Posture distortion: With Sciatica, you may not be able to walk upright or with a balanced posture. You have to change your normal posture for walking in a different orientation to get relief.
Common Treatments for Sciatica
There are standard treatments you can use to treat Sciatica. However, they may be a bit expensive or don’t heal this condition permanently.
- Use of Pain relievers: These are common drugs often prescribed for Sciatica pain. They involve anti-inflammatories, muscle relaxants, narcotics, and anti-depressants. This is usually your first option for treating Sciatica. While it may be helpful, it shouldn’t be used for extended periods due to some possible side effects. If it seems not to work, consider other alternatives.
- Physical therapies: Physical therapies like taking yoga classes, periodic exercises, and other routines improve posture to balance and reduce Sciatica.
- Surgical operations: This should be the last resort in treating Sciatica, and that’s when it has reached the peak. The peak refers to severe disc bulge or herniation. Then surgery is an inevitable option. Surgery for this form of treatment comes in two ways, which is either Discectomy or Laminectomy. Discectomy involves the removal of herniated disk or bone spur. Laminectomy involves the removal of lamina along with tissues pressing the nerve. It may be worthwhile, but it’s an expensive form of treatment.
How A Chiropractor Treats Sciatica
Sciatica often presents as a form of pseudo-sciatica, which is often mild. It is recommended to seek help from a chiropractor and first determine if you truly have sciatica. A chiropractor will ask questions about your overalll state of health and lifestyle and then perform diagnostic tests that may include X-rays or even MRIs.
Once a chiropractor examines the cause of Sciatica, they move to perform treatments with standard chiropractic techniques. These include:
- Spinal adjustment: Here’s a discovery from a recent study. It states that 60% of sciatica patients who failed other forms of treatment got relief through spinal manipulation. In fact, this study concludes that patients with symptoms that continue through failing medical management should consider spinal manipulation. That’s before they move on to a surgical phase if necessary. A chiropractor carries out this form of spinal manipulation using high-velocity thrust with minimal pressure. This form of therapy allows a chiropractor to move the lower vertebra.
- Chiropractic massage therapy: It’s like a massage from a spa but directed towards healing sciatica. A chiropractor lays you a flat surface, then massages the area to release sore muscles. A thorough application on these parts helps release sore muscles and improve healing.
- Heat and cold therapy: The heat application to the muscle helps remove pain from the body. Meanwhile, cold therapy helps slow inflammation and nerve irritation from the body to reduce painful feelings. The chiropractor will likely have the best recommendation for use of this therapy to treat Sciatica.
Hopefully this article will help with what you need to know about Sciatica and techniques Chiropractors use to treat it. If you fall victim to sciatica or have a family member who does, conservative treatment by your local chiropractor may be ideal. You can pay a visit to your Local Keller Chiropractor for an assessment today.